Gov. Phil Scott has yet to appoint a new chair of the Green Mountain Care Board as a contentious and pivotal hospital budget season kicks off.
BlueCross BlueShield of Vermont has asked the Green Mountain Care Board for a 12.5% increase in 2023. MVP Health Care asked for 16.6%.
Demand for hospital beds across the region has been up in recent months amid the surge of the delta variant of the virus that causes Covid-19 and worsening chronic illnesses due to delays in seeking care earlier in the pandemic.
The decision follows weeks of confusion around the reappointment process to the health care spending regulatory board. Ultimately, Holmes was the only applicant for the job.
Jessica Holmes is up for reappointment to the Green Mountain Care Board seat on Sept 30. The process outlined in statute does not appear to have been followed.
The $1.35 billion budget is $75 million more than the spending approved last year, and well over the 3.5% cap advised by the board earlier this year.
Opponents are taking aim at the Colchester accountable care organization's performance and transparency, as well as the Green Mountain Care Board's oversight. Some board members say the criticism is premature.